Election officials warn of deadlines as qualifying for judicial, State Attorney races nears
Laurel Lee. Image via Colin Hackley.

'I encourage all candidates who plan to run for office to ... file the appropriate qualifying documents as early as possible.'

The qualifying period for judicial races and select races for state attorney and public defender races is two weeks away, and state election officials are urging candidates to start getting their paperwork in now.

The Department of State, which oversees elections, is accepting qualifying papers submitted in the 14 days before the qualifying period begins at noon on April 25.

“With the 2022 elections quickly approaching, I encourage all candidates who plan to run for office to take advantage of the 14-day period or to file the appropriate qualifying documents as early as possible in the qualifying period,” Secretary of State Laurel Lee said in a released statement. “Further information about qualifying dates and elections is available on the Division of Elections’ website.”

There are five retention races for Florida Supreme Court justices on the November ballot, in which voters will be asked whether Justices Charles Canady, John Couriel, Jamie Grosshans, Jorge Labarga and Ricky Polston should be retained on the bench.

Canady, Labarga and Polton have been on the court the longest, having been appointed by former Gov. Charlie Crist in 2008 and 2009. But Couriel and Grosshans have relatively little experience on the state’s high court, as they were appointed by Gov. Ron DeSantis in 2020.

No Florida Supreme Court justice has lost a retention vote since they were instituted in the 1970s.

Judges on appellate courts and circuit courts will face retention votes as well. There are also state attorney races in the 6th Judicial Circuit, which covers Pasco and Pinellas counties, and the 20th Judicial Circuit, which covers Charlotte, Collier, Glades, Hendry and Lee counties. Voters in the 20th Judicial Circuit will also have a public defender race on their ballot.

The qualifying period for those races ends at noon April 29.

Gray Rohrer


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